Our dark and our light are so intertwined

Jeff-Bridges

He considers his latest film (The Giver), co-starring Taylor Swift and Meryl Streep, a cautionary tale. “I think it’s an impulse for human beings to want to suffer less, and we’re kind of addicted to comfort at all costs—at least I am. And of course comfort has a price,” he says. “So the film is asking…what’s the true cost of our comfort, and what are we willing to pay?”

What is he too comfortable with? Sitting on a long white leather couch at a photo studio in New York, Mr. Bridges holds up a half-eaten almond croissant. “I love taste, and I love the immediate gratification of flavor and that satisfying swallow you feel all over,” he says. “But I look at my body and I should say, ‘Is that really the most healthy thing for me?'”…

But leaning back and eyeing the last of his croissant, he says that he is constantly dealing with the idea of perfection. “Wouldn’t it be great if I stopped eating this and worked out every day?” he asks. “Imperfection and perfection go so hand in hand, and our dark and our light are so intertwined, that by trying to push the darkness or the so-called negative aspects of our life to the side…we are preventing ourselves from the fullness of life.”

He’s referring to one of his favorite quotations by the Russian author Alexander Solzhenitsyn: “…the line dividing good and evil cuts through the heart of every human being. And who is willing to destroy a piece of his own heart?” Mr. Bridges interprets it as a reason not to judge other people. “You’re saying that guy’s evil, somebody else is saying you’re evil, and we all have that in common, but as The Dude might say, ‘That’s just your opinion, man,’ ” he says. “What I’m proposing is that we’re all connected, and we’re all in it together.”

~ Alexandra Wolfe in her interview of 64-year old actor Jeff Bridges

Read full interview in wsj.com: Things That Jeff Bridges Can’t Abide


Notes: NY Times Movie Review of The Giver

Sunday Morning: Why I live in mortal dread


You’ll say you don’t have time to watch this.
It’s 13 minutes.
You need to move on to the next post.

And I’m telling you that
this woman is something special.

Don’t quit on this one.
Take it to the finish.

Good Sunday Morning.


Megan Alexandra Washington, 28, was born in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea. She is an Australian musician and songwriter also known mononymously as Washington. Originally performing jazz music her style evolved to indie pop and alternative rock where she sings and plays piano and guitar.  She developed a stutter early in her life and continues to struggle with her speech.  Find her website here: washingtonmusic.com.au. Find her album on iTunes here: I Believe You Liar

Saturday Morning Coffee


Topology is quintet from Australia formed in 1997. They perform throughout Australia and abroad and have to date released four albums. Find their album on iTunes here: Difference Engine


SMWI*: Go Baby, Go!

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SMWI*: Saturday Morning Work-Out Inspiration. Source: memeguy.com


Mama’s Boy. Then. And Now.

Here’s Eric with his Mom at 9 years old.

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And here’s Eric with his Mom last night in front of the restaurant in Norwalk where we had dinner. He’s now 20:

[Read more...]

TGIF: 5:00 Bell!

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Source: Weeklyrandom

Ignite it. Let it come out to play.

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[…] Not just offering an object,
but the soul,
your life’s mission ignited and on fire,
burning with a thousand different flames,
all blazing and sparking together
in more than a lifetime
of sleepless nights and saturated days.
Your soul has something to say.
Let it come out and play.

~ Quaglia Cocco

 


Credits: Poem – Thank you makebelieveboutique.com. Photography: ThePalette.  About Quaglia Cocco.

T.G.I.F.: ‘Tis but a scratch

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Holy-Grail-2


Related Monty Python and The Holy Grail Posts:


Source: matty-bojangles

Long Day? Just – – It.

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Source: themetapicture.com. Thanks Susan.

Our Zeke. In The Pose.

dog-model-vizla


…False. Not Zeke. Our Zeke wouldn’t stand still for 3 seconds. Love this dog and the spray paint art.

Now, here’s Rachel’s shot of our Zeke below (and yes, bribed to look up with a treat).

[Read more...]

Our Zeke. In the Pose.

dog-model-vizla


…False. Not Zeke. Our Zeke wouldn’t stand still for 3 seconds. Love this dog and the spray paint art.

Now, here’s Rachel’s shot of our Zeke in his real pose (and yes, bribed to look up for a treat).

[Read more...]

More from Morford

robin-williams

(Yet) another great piece by Mark Morford on the aftermath of Robin Williams death titled: A little spark of madness:

Was this really necessary?…

No answer comes. This is the beautiful, brutal secret of the universe. No answer ever comes. It just keeps dancing.

…Really now, do we not invent many of our own demons, feed and coddle them, manufacture and amplify and make them into unstoppable armies? Given the size of the population, our rapacious rates of consumption, the dazzling reach of the Internet and the speed at which suffering can now gain traction and travel, we have more potential threats to the stability of our psyche – both personal and collective – than we’ve ever had before…

But then, what of the popular Jungian notion that the dark side, the shadow is ever-present and ever lurking? What do we make of the idea that we are ever at the mercy of our own treacherous temptations and inherent flaws? What of the fear that whatever took down Williams is ever breathing at all our doors?…

What do you think?…

Read his wonderful perspective and inspirational conclusion @ A little spark of madness:


Credits: Image form Living in Maine

Go cold turkey for Cash? A tough call.

funny-cell-phone-Facebook-computer-WiFi


Source: themetapicture.com. Thanks Susan.

Hmmmmmm

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Why, it might be asked, does literature have to have a business at all? Is it not sufficient that it give pleasure, convey information, widen experience, provide flashes of insight? One reads the world’s finest novels, plays, poems, and in time one becomes a more cultivated person, which means somehow more refined, subtler, deeper, possibly even—though this might be pushing it—better. You are what you read; and culture, like heredity and cheap paint, rubs off.

~ Joseph Epstein, A Literary Education and Other Essays. Axios Press.

 


Notes: Image Source – Distant Passion


 

 

 

Batting .500!

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All good on the caffeine, alcohol and exercise fronts! (So sad on the latter)!


Source: The Huffington Post via Ilovecharts

Guess.What.Day.It.Is?

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Caleb, his harem and baby Albino out for a walk on Hump Day…


Source: Benoit Cappronnier. Camels and baby albino camel taken in Massawa, Etritrea.

What will your verse be?

Dead-Poets-Society-01

We don’t read and write poetry because it’s cute. We read and write poetry because we are members of the human race. And the human race is filled with passion. And medicine, law, business, engineering, these are noble pursuits and necessary to sustain life. But poetry, beauty, romance, love, these are what we stay alive for. To quote from Whitman, “O me! O life!… of the questions of these recurring; of the endless trains of the faithless… of cities filled with the foolish; what good amid these, O me, O life?” Answer. That you are here – that life exists, and identity; that the powerful play goes on and you may contribute a verse. That the powerful play *goes on* and you may contribute a verse. What will your verse be?

~ Robin Williams as John Keating, Dead Poets Society (1989)


Credits: Image – creofire. Quote – imdb.com

Good Morning, Vietnam


The Best Robin Williams’ moments from the movie Good Morning, Vietnam. Robin Williams, RIP, 1951-2014.


Is it a blessing? Totally.

robin-williams

Interview in The Guardian, September, 2010:

He takes everything, he says, more slowly now…”You know, I was shameful, and you do stuff that causes disgust, and that’s hard to recover from. You can say, ‘I forgive you’ and all that stuff, but it’s not the same as recovering from it. It’s not coming back.”

…it may well be down to the open-heart surgery he underwent early last year, when surgeons replaced his aortic valve with one from a pig.

“Oh, God, you find yourself getting emotional. It breaks through your barrier, you’ve literally cracked the armour. And you’ve got no choice, it literally breaks you open. And you feel really mortal.” Does the intimation of mortality live with him still? “Totally.” Is it a blessing? “Totally.”

Robin Williams, 63,  [July 29th 1951 - August 11th 2014]. RIP.

 


Notes: Photo – Tracylord

 

Monday Morning Mantra: Swim in Your Sea

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Think of one of those Chuck Close self-portraits. The face takes up the entire image. You can see every pore. Some people try to introspect like that. But others see themselves in broader landscapes, in the context of longer narratives about forgiveness, or redemption or setback and ascent. Maturity is moving from the close-up to the landscape, focusing less on your own supposed strengths and weaknesses and more on the sea of empathy in which you swim, which is the medium necessary for understanding others, one’s self, and survival.

~ David Brooks, Introspective or Narcissistic?


Notes:

Monday Morning Haiku

monday-morning-haiku-funny


Source: Kristina Krause

The Lunchbox (Fantastic!)


The Lunchbox, winner of Critics’ Week Viewers Choice Award at Cannes 2013. A mistaken delivery in Mumbai’s famously efficient lunchbox delivery system connects a young housewife to an older man in the dusk of his life as they build a fantasy world together through notes in the lunchbox. They each discover a new sense of self and find an anchor to hold on to in the big city of Mumbai that so often crushes hopes and dreams. But since they’ve never met, Ila and Saajan become lost in a virtual relationship that could jeopardize both their realities. (Source: Youtube)

I don’t know when I became old. 
Maybe it was that morning. 
Maybe it was many, many mornings ago…
Life kept going and lulled me with its motions.
I kept rocking back and forth 
as it threw me left and threw me right.
And before I knew it…


 

 

Only in America…

water-hand-swim-ocean-relax-touch-feel

Only in America do we equate workaholism with virtue and view time spent at the shore or in the mountains or in the desert as time wasted — as evidence of laziness. Americans feel guilty about taking time off and equate workaholism with virtue. That’s stupid.

~ William Falk, Why you deserve a vacation via theweekmagazine


Post inspired by the movie: “13 Conversations About One Thing“:

I’ve always thought of contentment
as a form of resignation.
Of accepting the status quo.
It means you’ve given up.
I’m not ready to surrender.

~ John Turturro in 13 Conversations about One Thing 

Loved the movie. Here’s a trailer:



Sources:

Sunday Morning: I Found


And I fallen in love where I wasn’t supposed to be
Right in front of me, talk some sense to me


Amber Run are a five piece band from Nottingham, UK formed in 2012.  London Contemporary Voices is one of London’s leading non-traditional choirs. They specialise in work with established artists such as festivals, gigs and recording. They regularly put on their own concerts, covering a broad repertoire leaning towards contemporary popular and leftfield music. They are a young mixed-voice choir of 40 singers, all auditioned to a high standard.

I Love New Research

Print


Steps for Longevity: A recent study has found that running for just five minutes a day, even at a slow pace, has similar health benefits to running for longer periods.


Source: wsj.com

SMWI*: It’s easier to work-out with a friend

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Notes: SMWI*: Saturday Morning Work-Out Inspiration. Image Source: gifak

Saturday Morning

cat-kitten-bliss-black and white


Source: Atrocity Exhibition

5:00 Bell: Let me Go. Let me Go.

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Source: themetapicture.com (Thanks Susan)

Humanity Surfaces. All together now: Push.

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A man got his leg wedged between the train and the platform while boarding a train in Perth, Australia on Tuesday.  Crowds grew, watching and then pushed against the side of the train, tilting the train car so the man could free his leg.  People clapped when the man’s leg was freed, and the train was on its way a few minutes later. The man’s injuries aren’t believed to be serious. (See full video here at ABC News.)


Image Source: 4gifs.com

 

 

T.G.I.F.: It’s been a long week

TGIF-cat-angry-funny


Source: themetapicture.com

Driving. To Exit 9.

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It’s Wednesday evening.
I’m on my commute home from work.
Traffic is flowing on I-95 North.
A school of fish gliding down a rapid current.

He drips into consciousness at Exit 5.
There are three words on a piece of tattered cardboard, written with a thick, black, felt pen.
The words are stacked.

Homeless.
Hungry.
Help.

My thoughts shift to a Netflix movie. I’m replaying scenes from 13 Conversations About One Thing as I’m chewing up highway. John Turturro: Life of predictability. Fullness of routine.

He stands at the same Exit. Exit 9. My Exit.
There’s a stop light at the end of the long exit ramp.
You can’t avoid him, unless you are at the back of the line in rush hour.
And then you pass him at 15 mph as you negotiate the corner.

White male. 35-40 years old. Clean shaven. Average weight and height. A coat a bit heavy and oversized for the season, but not unusually so. His eyes, those eyes, emit distress.

Addict? Alcohol? Prescription Drugs? Coke? Meth? 
Unemployed? Unemployable? Record?
Bad decisions? Bad luck?  
He doesn’t give much away.
[Read more...]

James Joyce. His Bell Tolls (for me).

It continues to haunt. James Joyce and Ulysses. Unfinished, brooding on my book shelf. I first discussed his book in a earlier post: Just Can’t Finish. Then I tripped into this video. Luck? I don’t think so. It’s time. Time to pull it off the shelf and give it another whack…

Larry Kirwan, 71, Irish writer and musician, on James Joyce:

Never once did he doubt his own genius, and God knows he had a awfully hard life. He became almost blind to his always broke, always borrowing. And yet he knew his strength. His strength for story, and words and music. I think we read him because of his music and his rhythms.  Catching the soul of a person. And catching the inner dialogue, say in the Molly Bloom thing, you could never have met a woman and read Molly Bloom and know what a woman is about. He’s that strong a writer to me.

Frank Delaney, 71, Irish journalist, author and broadcaster, on James Joyce:

This is what he does better than anyone else. He understands the tiny sins, the tiny virtues, the tiny venalities, the tiny advantages that people will look for in life. And nobody else ever did that before and nobody, I would contend, has done it as well since.


Time to Roll: Head down. Let’s Fly.

cute, adorable,bird,
Baby Owl Learning How to Fly


 

Happy Birthday Mimi!

Birthday-Cake-With-Candles-1

She showed up here with a comment in March, 2012. How? From where? No idea.

She rings the morning bell at the crack of dawn with a dash of wit or splash of insight – softening up the spillway for others to come behind her. Gentle. Grace. Light.

I’ve had a handful of guest bloggers post on my blog. Don’t miss: The Final Act of Love

Her post was recognized by WordPress as one of the best of the day in “Freshly Pressed“: An Ode to Entomology

Here’s an excerpt from her beautiful post yesterday on the Eve of a Big Day:

Perhaps that’s it – I still believe in wonders.  In fact I think I notice them more than ever before.  Wonder in the breath of the wind, the intangible, unbreakable connections that tie me to those I love.  Wonder at how much more meaning my days have now that they have fewer requirements to dilute the attention I might give to the sun on my face.  And while I marvel, I also realize how tightly I am holding onto this life.  How much I love the moments as well as the spaces in between, when I breathe in the absolute sweetness of being a part of it all.

Read more here: Suddenly Sixty

Happy Birthday Mimi.


Image Credit: calendar.org

 

Yes.

“After silence, that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music.”

~ Aldous Huxley, Music at Night and Other Essays


↓ click for audio (“Ruth and Sylvie” by Daniel Hart)

[Read more...]

Feel like…

ocean-blue-sun-sea-swim


Source: Niadil

Guess.What.Day.It.Is?

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Bellys’ down on Hump Day and bask in it!


Photograph: Jim Boud. Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.

Tuesday Titter: Think Titanic

funny-titanic-art-fear


Source: Drake

The Morning News

newspaper-good-news


[I wish...]


Source: themetapicture

As you prepare your breakfast

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As you prepare your breakfast, think of others
(do not forget the pigeon’s food).
As you wage your wars, think of others
(do not forget those who seek peace).
As you pay your water bill, think of others
(those who are nursed by clouds).
As you return home, to your home, think of others
(do not forget the people of the camps).
As you sleep and count the stars, think of others
(those who have nowhere to sleep).
As you express yourself in metaphor, think of others
(those who have lost the right to speak).
As you think of others far away, think of yourself
(say: If only I were a candle in the dark.)

— Mahmoud Darwish, “Think of Others”

 


Credits: Poem – The Journey of Words from Darwish’s book Almond Blossoms and Beyond. Photograph: bdak89

Monday Mantra: Stirring the Pot

pot-boiling-stir

When the mind becomes highly relaxed and alert at the same time, three wonderful qualities of mind naturally emerge: calmness, clarity, and happiness. Here is the analogy. Imagine you have a pot of water full of sediments, and imagine that pot is constantly shaken and agitated. The water appears cloudy. Imagine that you stop agitating the pot and just let it rest on the floor. The water will become calm and, after a while, all the sediments will settle and the water will appear clear. This is the classical analogy of the mind in the alert and relaxed state. In this state, we temporarily stop agitating the mind the same way we stop agitating the pot.

~ Chade-Meng Tan, Search Inside Yourself: The Unexpected Path to Achieving Success, Happiness (and World Peace) [Read more...]

Monday Morning Wake-Up Call: Time To Work

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Photograph by Ben Andrews. Thank you Your Eyes Blaze Out.

Boys Home Alone

post-it

A 3M Post-It Note. Picture not to scale. The post-it is actually 1″ x 2″, dwarfed by the two-foot high, 45-quart, air-tight, dog food storage container which sits underneath it. But, the Post-it punches above its weight class.

3 Words + a few symbols = Irritation.

She doesn’t think I will give him the right dosage.

She thinks I’ll overfeed him. You’re cutting his life short by giving him all these snacks.

3/4 C (Dog Food) + H20 (Water) + 1/4 C Green Beans (to help him with his digestion).

Mom and Eric are on a road trip for the weekend to see family. Rachel is in the city with Friends.

Dad and Man’s Best Friend Zeke are Home Alone.

Back to the Post-Its.
[Read more...]

Mistakes made by the selves we had to be

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Do you have hope for the future? someone asked Robert Frost, toward the end.

Yes, and even for the past, he replied, that it will turn out to have been all right for what it was, something we can accept, mistakes made by the selves we had to be, not able to be, perhaps, what we wished, or what looking back half the time it seems we could so easily have been, or ought…

The future, yes, and even for the past, that it will become something we can bear.

And I too, and my children, so I hope, will recall as not too heavy the tug of those albatrosses I sadly placed upon their tender necks.

Hope for the past, yes, old Frost, your words provide that courage, and it brings strange peace that itself passes into past, easier to bear because you said it, rather casually, as snow went on falling in Vermont years ago.

~ David Ray, “Thanks, Robert Frost.”

 


David Ray, 82, was born in Sapulpa, Oklahoma. Ray comes from a broken home that was thrown into upheaval when his father left the family by hopping on the back of a watermelon truck headed to California. After his mother’s next failed marriage ended in the suicide of Ray’s stepfather, he and his sister Mary Ellen were placed into foster care—a system that wasn’t kind to young children in the late 1930s and early 1940s. Ray’s classic “Mulberries of Mingo” steeps from memories of he and his sister being thrown out of a foster families home at dinner time – to fend for themselves eating the mulberries from a neighbor’s tree. The years that followed were dark and tragic as he and his sister were separated to face their separate nightmares of abuse. He is a distinguished award winner, and has lectured and read at over 100 Universities in England, Canada and the U.S. Graduating from the University of Chicago, BA, MA. Ray’s poetry varies from short, three to four lines pieces, to longer 30 lines poems. His work is also often autobiographical, providing unique context and insight to scenes of childhood, love, fear, sex, and travel. “Communication is important to him, and he has the courage, working with a genre in which simplicity is suspect, to say plainly what he means.” He and his wife, poet and essayist Judy Ray, live in Tucson, Arizona.

Studs Terkel: David Ray’s poetry has always been radiant even though personal tragedy has suffused it.” [Read more...]

Yep, you’re addicted

book-coffee-bed-weekend-read
49 Signs You’re Addicted To Reading by Koty Neelis:

1) …People are cool but reading is your preferred social activity.

8) You carry a book with you at all times because you never know when you’ll have a spare minute to do some extra reading.

16) You legitimately don’t understand people who say they don’t read.

25) You honestly can’t think of a better way to spend a Sunday than reading a book and drinking coffee or tea.

29) You buy more books even if you have a stack of books that haven’t been read yet.

Read all 49 signs your addicted @ 49 Signs You’re Addicted To Reading


Photograph: weheartit

About Today


The National is an American indie rock band formed in Cincinnati, Ohio, United States, in 1999, and currently based in Brooklyn. The band’s lyrics, which have been described as “dark, melancholy and difficult to interpret”, are written and sung by Matt Berninger, a baritone. The band has recorded six studio albums; the most recent, Trouble Will Find Me, was released in May 2013 and was nominated in the 2014 Grammys for Best Alternative Album.

Find this song on iTunes on the album Cherry Tree.  Find their most current album here: Trouble Will Find Me


Post Inspiration:Preciousandfregilethings

Saturday Morning Work-Out Inspiration

turtle-swim-cute-adorable


Source: maeviekathleen


Saturday Morning

dog-cute-rest-sleep-Saturday-morning


Source: Iconosquare.com

5:00 Bell!

fox-howl


Source: Ivan Kislov


In there is the question

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Do you know how it is
when one wakes at night suddenly
and asks, listening to the pounding heart:
what more do you want,
insatiable?

— Czeslaw Milosz, from Farewell


Credits: Poem – Thank you Schonweider. Photograph: Lost in Vogue